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Thread: Wavy epson 9800 prints

  1. #21
    Founder QT Luong's Avatar
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    Wavy epson 9800 prints

    With regards to mechanical problems, I am quite close to the beginning of the roll, having used less than 30 feet. I examined the raw paper before printing, but putting the 60x40 board against the printer at a 45 degrees angle, and then rolling out the paper over the printer and onto the board. The result is that the paper itself just doen't appear perfectly flat to my eyes. There are already a couple of waves parallel to the axis of the roll, as well as other ondulations perpendicular to it. Is it normal ? I would tend to think that if the paper isn't flat before printing, why should it be flat after printing ?

  2. #22

    Wavy epson 9800 prints

    QT, You've got me on that one. I've personally not had any rolls with flat spots (due to packaging/shipping problems) but it wouldn't surprise me to hear that they can happen, especially given how sensitive the paper is to the bulge created by the end of the paper where it attaches to the core. An examination of the box and the bubble wrap the paper came in might help to reveal if it was mishandled in shipping. A sudden cargo shift could have sent another crate careening into your roll. Given how little protective packaging the rolls of paper utilize, it is remarkable that damage is not more common.

    I have had some rolls show up with visible damage to the shipping container, and I called the supplier before I would accept shipment to ensure that they didn't think it was my problem, but as it turns out, there wasn't any damage to the actual paper . I've also had cut sheets of paper samples that were dinged by mishandling during the packaging and shipping. That particular incident was not with an Epson brand paper, however.

    A far more common problem that I've encountered is oversize sheet paper damaged in shipping. (I just noted the same thing on some prints I saw at a friends house recently). All it takes is for someone to put something heavy on the box. A dent can easily run through the entire 25-sheet stack of textured fine art paper, and when put through the printer, it will show up as a printing abberation since the dent alters the reflectance of the paper surface.

  3. #23
    Jack Flesher's Avatar
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    Wavy epson 9800 prints

    QT: What you describe does sound odd. When I strip paper off a roll it will have gentle undulations parallel to the roll as you unfurl it, but nothing perpendicular... It almost sounds like the roll may have gotten wet -- or at least damp -- somewhere in its life, probably before it got to you.

    I would not waste any more ink on that roll, return it and try a new one.
    Jack Flesher

    www.getdpi.com

  4. #24
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    Wavy epson 9800 prints

    Waves aside, I am surprised that someone else's profile is good enough for QT.

    Considering that a good profile can be had for around $100, it's a wise investment, and much cheaper and faster than getting your own spectrophotometer, especially if you use only a single combination of paper and ink.

    Compared to the "consumables" (especially for a large printer like the 9800), the expense of a profile is really trivial.

  5. #25

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    Wavy epson 9800 prints

    Interesting, and I am glad to read QT's description of this problem. I have also noticed annoying waves on Epson enhanced matte paper printed on my 2200. The waves are about an inch an a half between crests. They are noticable on dark portions of prints under oblique artificial light. My waves run parallel to the long dimensions of the precut 13x19 that I use, which is perpendicular to the feed direction of my printer. I am using Epson profiles. I generally allow my prints to dry on a flat surface for 24 hours after printing.

    The problem has always seemed to me a problem with the paper and I have wondered about whether or not it could be fixed by using a heavier paper.

  6. #26

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    Wavy epson 9800 prints

    After my post i was thinking that it would be worthwhile to experiment with running my paper through the printer in 2 perpendicular directions to see if this affects the directions that the waves run. Has anyone else tried this?

  7. #27
    Jack Flesher's Avatar
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    Wavy epson 9800 prints

    FWIW on the 1440 vs 2880 issue above:

    I just printed a target print using both settings. It does take about 2x as long for the 2880 to print out and it definitely uses more ink. After letting them dry down I could see no appreciable difference. In fact, I even tried mixing them up and could not pick which was which with any regularity.

    I am using my own cutom-made profiles which I found to be superior to the (quite good) canned profiles provided by Eposn, so perhaps it is more of a profile issue than anything else.

    All offered FWIW only,
    Jack Flesher

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  8. #28
    Founder QT Luong's Avatar
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    Wavy epson 9800 prints

    Jack, are the "gentle ondulations" that you mention noticeable in the final print too ? Could it be that they are the same as the "ditches" mentionned by Keith ?

    As for profiles, keep in mind that I installed the printer recently, so I am not done experimenting.
    However, my understanding is that the large Epsons have a close-loop feedback and an individual calibration chip that makes the output of two different samples very, very close (unlike most other printers). I read that on the 9600 Bill Atkinson did a considerable amount of work to build his profiles, and in many cases you would get superior results by using them on your own printer rather than getting a specific profile (made with less sophisticated methods) for your printer. It could well be that the situation has changed for the 9800.

  9. #29
    Jack Flesher's Avatar
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    Wavy epson 9800 prints

    The 7800/9800 printers are all "linearized" at the factory. I understand this means is they all are calibrated to some standard on some paper, and thus all of them will be very close in overall output.

    In my case, when I first got my printer, I printed my standard test print using the canned Epson profile. In short, I felt it was excellent as-is and that probably my own profile would not be any better. But since I already owned the tool, I figured WTH and went ahead and built my own profile. Bottom line is there was a slight, but visible, improvement with mine. It was most notable in the neutrality of grays -- and of course any non-neutrality affects the other tones too. Whether or not it was a critical difference in the typical landscape shot would be debatable.

    As a further example of how good this new K3 printer using my own profile is, I can print my B&W images using PS's direct color-management with it and the prints are every bit as neutral as the Epson direct B&W driver produces! But the added benefit is since I am printing color-managed directly from PS, I can soft-proof and get more accurate tonality from screen to paper than the Epson B&W driver can provide. I can even add cool or warm toning and get an accurate preview of the final image.

    ~~~

    Regarding the undulations. As I said earlier, I hinge mount, so the print is not held firmly against the mounting board anywhere inside the matte. I am currently not printing larger than 24x36, but at that size once the glass is over the print, you can only see a slight "bulge" in the center relative to the edge at the matte if you hold the framed print at an extreme angle to a light source. Once hung on the wall and viewed at normal viewing angles it is not noticeable at all and looks flat. FWIW, I printed up to 36x54 out of my 9600 and still hinge-mounted Epson Premium Luster without issues. Frankly, the bigger issue I had with the 36" wide prints was not kinking them (creating the little half-moon buckles) when handling the final -- at that size, the thinner roll papers kink easily.

    Cheers,
    Jack Flesher

    www.getdpi.com

  10. #30

    Wavy epson 9800 prints

    QT, Bill's approach has become more sophisticated than what he used to generate the Lightjet, and later Epson profiles. He changed in response to different profiling software/hardware combinations now available. In short, he found that none of the device/software combinations is perfect and he hopes that by demonstrating the shortcomings of each, through competitive market forces, he may be able to encourage the manufacturers to improve their software. He now offers a "boquet" of profiling alternatives to choose from, leaving it to the end-user to decide which manufacturer's profile/paper combination they prefer. While not as readily apparent in the final output if you don't know what to look for, the differences/irregularities in the results clearly show up in the color targets he generates to measure and create the profiles. Very eye-opening.

    Jack, I am curious if the supposed difference in the 2880 vs. 1440 print quality on the 7800/9800 series is image dependent. I never did get a chance to observe the difference myself, but I trust the keen eye of my source and their desire not to make life more complicated than it need be. ;-)

    Also, in response to your print handling challenges, perhaps you are already aware, if you pick up a print by diagonally opposite corners, you'll greatly reduce he chance of kinking.

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